HIV And AIDS: The Deadly Duo
Everyone seems to know something HIV and AIDS but this deadly duo does not seem to wake up people to see the serious effect it will have should an epidemic happen. Maybe the epidemic has happened or is still happening if you see the statistics of more than 25 million infected children and adults in sub-Saharan Africa and the 1 million that is in the United States.
AIDS stands for Acquired ImmunoDeficiency Syndrome and breaking it down would be represented like this:
o Acquired means that there’s a good chance you will get it.
o Immunodeficiency means that the immune system is deficient to combat the disease.
o Syndrome means the signs and symptoms that are inherent in the disease.
The virus that causes AIDS is called Human Immunodeficiency Virus or HIV. The minute you acquire HIV, your body will automatically start defending itself by producing antibodies. The presence of these antibodies is the basis for the blood test for HIV. The immune system becomes weaker as HIV progresses and even smaller viruses that are never allowed entry in your body when it was healthy before now have their chance to even make you sicker.
Here are the ways that can get you infected with HIV:
o Unsafe sex
o Sharing of needles with an individual infected with HIV
o Born from an HIV- infected mother
o Having a blood transfusion using blood infected with HIV
The early symptoms of HIV would be like coming down with the flu. Your weakened state gives the virus the time to multiply while destroying your immune system which would make recovery an almost impossible feat. HIV will later bloom to AIDS where this time, the infected individual no longer has the immune system to fight them off. AIDS could not be cured. The newly discovered drugs are simply to reduce the rampaging effects of HIV to the immune system.
The transference of HIV from one body to another is through body fluids and blood.
Unprotected sex stands a bigger chance of acquiring and spreading HIV. The moist and soft membranes of the body such as the tip of the penis, the inner portion of the rectum, nose, vagina or mouth will allow the HIV to enter through its sexual fluids and blood.
Using condoms is very important to stop infected body fluids or blood to enter a healthy body. Bleeding gums, cuts or sores are things to be considered as they are open portals to the body. The use of lubricants may be sexually stimulating, but it can also make latex barriers and condom ineffective against infection.
There is also a great degree of risk in HIV transference during oral sex. When there are sores, bleeding or mouth ulcers, it is another passageway for infected body fluids to enter an uninfected body. The best barrier in oral sex would be condoms that do not have lubricants. Still, the best way to stay healthy is to have a single uninfected partner.